A Colorado federal judge dismissed antitrust allegations that DuPont Co. helped one auto paint wholesaler ruin another DuPont dealer, saying the manufacturer committed no antitrust violations by offering financial assistance to a competitor of JTS Enterprises Inc.

The U.S. District Judge rejected JTS’s claims stemming from discounts that DuPont provided to Metro Paint Supplies, which, according to the suit, enabled Metro to poach its rival’s customers by offering deep discounts. The court ruled that JTS’s customers didn’t switch to Metro because of an illegal conspiracy, but because they were dissatisfied with JTS’s service or could buy the product cheaper elsewhere.

DuPont urged the court to dismiss the case, saying its accuser was “a serial antitrust litigant” whose alleged conspiracy made no economic sense. DuPont said JTS failed to allege an antitrust inquiry and that the scheme DuPont was accused of participating in would not have been to its benefit. Further, the court said JTS offered no proof that discriminatory discounting and questioned how Metro’s pricing structure could be attributable to DuPont.

DuPont was represented by Stephen J. Kastenberg, David M. Stauss, Jessica M. Anthony, and Jeffrey B. Goldberg of Ballard Spahr.

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